Tonight, three Superiorland high school football teams - the "Boys of Fall" as so memorably named in a song by country star Kenny Chesney - will continue their quest for a Michigan High School Athletic Association championship.
In Division 8, the L'Anse Purple Hornets will travel to Crystal Falls to take on undefeated Forest Park. Defending state Division 7 champion Ishpeming heads to Iron River to clash with the West Iron County Wykons, a battle of 10-0 teams. And in Division 6, the Negaunee Miners host downstate foe Boyne City at the Superior Dome in Marquette.
Each game kicks off at 7 p.m. today.
All the hard work that began in the sweltering August sun has led to these three area teams still having a shot at being Michigan's best in their respective divisions.
Tonight's games will be for district titles and will determine which teams will advance to the regional round of games the weekend of Nov. 15-16.
After that, remaining teams will meet up in the semifinals Nov. 23 for a chance to advance to the MHSAA state finals at Ford Field in Detroit Nov. 29 and 30.
We hope our readers will find time to attend one of the games this evening to cheer on these football teams as they take to the gridiron.
We hope, as Chesney sings, there will be "fans goin' crazy for the Boys of Fall."
In particular we're pulling for the teams whose journey The Mining Journal has covered all season long: Go Purple Hornets! Go Hematites! Go Miners!
But what we hope for most of all is well-played games and no injuries.
High school sports can bring a community together. We know L'Anse, Ishpeming and Negaunee will be sending carloads of fans to the sites their teams will invade tonight.
More than that, this time of year, we believe Yoopers put aside city limit signs and become one Upper Peninsula family to cheer on any team above of the Mackinac Bridge that has a shot at bringing home a state championship trophy.
We hope U.P. Power has a few more weeks to light up the football scoreboards, including those at Ford Field.
Win or lose, though, much love to our "Boys of Fall."